This unique idea to begin a collection of signed baseballs from Presidents and world leaders came to Randy after seeing a display of opening day baseballs that were ceremoniously tossed out and signed by former U.S. Presidents at the National Baseball Hall of Fame Museum in Cooperstown, New York.
Over the years, Randy has been able to meet and persuade many world leaders to sign official Rawlings Major League baseballs for his unique collection. His goal to have the collection on display in the National Archives and Records Administration’s Presidential Library and Museum System became reality in 2008 when the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan, exhibited a portion of his collection in the “Born to Play Ball” exhibit.
The interesting twist on this collection is that all of these baseballs were received in person by Randy or obtained through the assistance of a top government official – such as when NY Congressman Gregory Meeks surprised Randy by having former South African President Nelson Mandela sign a baseball for him at a Congressional Black Caucus Meeting Washington, D.C. in 2005.
He does not purchase any baseballs at auction or such and therefore the collection can straightforwardly be identified as The Randy L. Kaplan Collection
Randy’s collection has been exhibited at: the Cradle of Aviation Museum in Garden City, New York in 2016; the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum in West Branch, Iowa in 2015; the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library and Museum in Austin, Texas in 2014; the Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum in Yorba Linda, California in 2014; the William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock, Arkansas in 2012 and at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 2008.
He has aspirations to one day have his collection on exhibit at all the remaining Presidential Libraries in the National Archives and Records Administration’s Presidential Library and Museum System, the United Nations in NYC, Geneva, Nairobi and Vienna as well as the National Baseball Hall of Fame Museum in Cooperstown, New York.
This internationally recognized collection has been prominently featured in numerous electronic and print media including: The Associated Press; The New York Times; ABC News; U.S. News & World Report; Newsday; ESPN.com (Grantland); The BBC News Network; News 12 TV on Long Island; National Public Radio (NPR); Fine Books and Collections Magazine as well as on the Imus in the Morning show on MSNBC.